University of Pennsylvania to Begin Construction on New Home for Annenberg Public Policy Center

PHILADELPHIA - By next year, steel beams framing the new Annenberg Public Policy Center building will begin to rise along the 36th Street walk on the University of Pennsylvania campus.  Occupancy of the building, designed by Tokyo architect Fumihiko Maki is set for late summer of 2009.

The building is a gift of the Annenberg Foundation and the Annenberg Foundation Trust at Sunnylands, which have contributed $41.5 million to the project, including $6 million earmarked for perpetual maintenance.

But before the innovative four-story glass and wood structure takes shape above ground, a complex underground infrastructure project is required.  When completed later this summer, these improvements -- undertaken to coincide with the APPC construction - will ultimately service the new building plus 13 adjacent campus structures.  Upgrades of telecommunications and electrical systems as well as gas and cooling supply lines will be made.  

This summer the 36th Street walkway between Walnut Street and Locust Walk will be closed and a boardwalk erected to route pedestrians away from the building site, occupied by the former Hillel House at 202 S. 36th St., which will be demolished.  The boardwalk will remain in place for about two years.

By September, the former Hillel House will be down.  In October, a foundation will be under way and by December the footings poured.  At the start of 2008, steel beams will begin pointing skyward.